Write your reflections from the classmate post by selecting an idea from the reading, describing your thoughts and feelings about it and why you agree. (MINIMUM OF 150 WORDS)

                                                             CLASSMATE’S POST

There were a number of things that contributed to the safeguarding of the “Jesus tradition” during the time between his death and the Gospels being written, as listed in the text book. They are:

(1) The stylistic forms of Jesus’ sayings. Jesus used proverbs, parables, moving phrases, riddles, and signature phrases.

(2) The terminology of tradition. There were some of Jesus’ hand-chosen men who were trained in the art of oral retention and dissemination.

(3) The function of apostles. The apostles were commissioned with and equipped to witness for Jesus.

(4) The cultural role of memory. The first-century “Jewish” environment expected the young to memorize and retain large amounts of scripture.

(5) Eyewitnesses and lapse of time. Many individuals who lived during the earthly ministry of Jesus were still living during the written distribution of the gospels.

(6) Written records? It is possible that some religious students took written notes of their teachers.

(7) Christian prophecy and caution. Christian prophets as well as Christian congregations, were given guidelines regarding the giving and receiving of prophecy.

(8) Respect for sayings of Jesus. The early believers were careful to distinguish between their words and the words of Jesus.

(9) Dissimilarity of interests. The interests and focus of Jesus were different than that of the early church. If church created sayings were attributed to Jesus, more, time sensitive issue related, teachings would exist.


Write your reflections from the classmate post by selecting an idea from the reading, describing your thoughts and feelings about it and why you agree. (MINIMUM OF 150 WORDS)

                                                      CLASSMATE’S POST

From the time of His death to the first written gospel, the words and deeds Jesus took about thirty to forty years to record those life events. Could those sayings and deeds be accurately preserved until it was time to write them down? That question is known as the “Jesus’ tradition.” Because of this gap in time, scholars such as Robert Funk founded the Jesus Seminar in 1985 to locate the historical Jesus. This committee concluded in 1993 that 18 percent of Jesus’ sayings were authentic. Moreover, in 1998, after weighing the 176 life events of Jesus, only 16 percent were considered genuine. However, the early church successfully safeguarded the sayings and deeds of Jesus until they were first written down based on these nine principles.

First, Christians retained the sayings of Jesus with ease since He spoke in parables, proverbs, riddles, etc. Furthermore, transliterated words and grammatical phrases in the Gospels come from the Aramaic language, the same dialect Jesus used in His time. The style in which Jesus spoke made it easy for the church to preserve through the decades. Second, people communicated religious material orally. If Jewish rabbis could carefully handle their traditions, such as the Mishnah, and speak about them to a new generation, the apostles of Jesus could do the same thing. Third, the apostles guarded and transmitted the teachings and deeds of Jesus. They, especially Paul, who came from Judaism to Christianity, would confirm or deny what was true or false.

Fourth, if the apostles, who were Jewish, had to memorize large portions of Hebrew Scripture, they could do it with the life events of Jesus. People remembered sayings and deeds because the majority of people could not read. Fifth, since eyewitnesses were still alive during the writing of the gospels, they could confirm or deny what Jesus said and did. Sixth, even though scholars dispute if students wrote written notes of the lessons their teachers taught, the disciples could have recorded Jesus’ sayings before AD 70. Seventh, the apostles told their listeners to watch for heresy (cf. 1 John 2:18-27; 4:1-6), and Christian prophets double-checked what they said before speaking (cf. 1 Corinthians 14).

Eighth, if Paul told his readers what the Lord says and his opinions on a topic (cf. 1 Cor. 7:8, 10, 12, 25, 40), the early church knew what came from Jesus and what did not. Ninth, the themes of the gospels and the issues the early church faced were different. Whenever the church was trying to settle a dispute about circumcision or food laws, they could not reference Jesus since He never addressed them. If the early Christians tried to, they would be creating sayings of Jesus, which would mean the gospels are inaccurate. These nine points prove the words and works of Jesus are reliable and accurate. His apostles carefully took care of His life stories because they believed He was the Messiah.

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